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Cumbria Tour 2015

I spent three days in February this year in Cumbria, north west part of England, working on the streets of the towns there. I teamed up with Dale McAlpine who is linked to Workington Grace Baptist Church. Dale works extensively doing street work in Cumbria. He also travels from time to time preaching with American brothers in Oxford, Cambridge and other places. He has also travelled to the USA doing street work there too. As if that wasn't enough he also has preaching responsibilities in his own church. I commend him and his labours to your prayers.

Day One - Tuesday:

We began in Whitehaven in the morning preaching in the town centre. Some made adverse comments, and some heckled from behind me as I was preaching. Meanwhile Dale was giving out literature to passers-by. At the close as we were packing up a young lady approached me, expressing an appreciation for our brave stance in preaching the gospel. She was offered and gladly took a testimony CD.

Preaching in Whitehaven


Dale giving out literature in Whitehaven

(Message preached in Whitehaven)

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We continued on from there to Kendal further south, about an hours drive away. We were joined by Andrew while both Dale and myself preached. Christian literature was given out also. One lady expressed a delight that we were there preaching the good news about Jesus. A man, a fellow Glaswegian, was engaged in conversation. He certainly was a man of faith, but from what he said, it was all very mystical. We left him with some literature and and a testimony CD which he gladly received.

Dale Preaching in Kendal

(Message preached in Kendal)

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Day Two - Wednesday:

We proceeded to Keswick today, the heart of the Lake District. a very popular town with tourists and hill walkers. It wasn't as busy today as it would be in the summer months, but still a fair few folk about. While I was preaching a couple came and stood before me, listening. Eventually they sat on the seat in front of me still listening intently. When made my usual offer of a gospel booklet the man, Graham, came forward and gladly took one. Eventually they both had gospels and a testimony CD. Another lady sat with them for a while, reportedly a lesbian, she xwas rather anti.

Myself preaching in Keswick

While Dale was preaching a man stood by a shop doorway obviously listening, as he moved away I offered him a piece of literature, which he took gladly. After a few moments he was back again. As Dale finished we engaged him in conversation. He turned out to be a Roman Catholic, but not converted, not reborn. We gave him quite a bit to think about, especially with regards to his erroneous views concerning salvation. He happily took some more literature.

Preaching in Keswick

(Message preached in Keswick)

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Day Three - Thursday:

We started out for Carlisle fairly early in order to get a good three hours in, giving out leaflets and preaching. We were joined by our brother Alan Natrass. Carlisle is the major City in Cumbria so much busier normally than the other towns. We started off preaching after coffee, but the going was very hard, words didn't flow easily, it felt like we climbing up hill. In spite of this some leaflets and brief conversations took place. Sometimes when it is hardest is when the Lord is at work, this has been our experience in the past anyway.

Dale Preaching in Carlisle

It was during our last stint of preaching that a man approached me obviously very angry. He raged at me telling me to get back to Scotland where I belonged. He moved immediately so I shouted after him telling him that it wasn't where at person came from that mattered but where he was going. I told him he was on the road to hell. I'm told a young believer rebuked him for being racist.

The Street Preacher being heckled

Good, Good News!
(Message preached in Carlisle)

Back in 2010 Dale McAlpine my brother in Christ had a run-in  with the police in his own town of Workington. He was arrested for saying that homosexuality was a sin. His case was taken up by the Christian Institute, the charges were dropped and Dale sued the police. He was awarded £15000 in damages. There was following this incident a series of providential disasters in the County of Cumbria. I say providential deliberately, for I do believe in 'natural' disasters, nothing in this universe happens without the Divine will. I thoroughly believe they were expressions of God's wrath. I wrote this poem in response to those events:


The wrath of God from heaven’s revealed,
In town in village and open field;
The fells and lakes most every spot,
In God’s displeasure severely caught.

Rain from heaven a deluge that rent,
People in sin towards hell that are bent;
Roads and bridges, foundations in ruin,
A path to damnation with sinners strewn.

In tones so sweet as Dale could raise,
Presenting Jesus such astonishing grace!
In love the sins of Sodom to prevent,
Calling, calling sinners to repent.

But what a din such a solemn voice,
Sodom’s sinners just wouldn’t rejoice;
With stiffened necks it was to no avail,
The Stasi came and took him to jail.

The wrath of God from heaven’s revealed,
In town in village and open field;
The fells and lakes most every spot,
In God’s displeasure severely caught.

Before He destroys He sends a delusion,
Midst those that live with a sinless illusion;
Those whom the gospel will not make glad,
It certainly will in the end make mad.

‘Twas one such flew o’er the cuckoo’s nest,
A tormented Bird to shoot all the rest;
Innocent victims? Nay! No such thing,
To judgment Jehovah won’t any such bring.

Death and destruction the furious wrath,
Is always sin’s terrible aftermath;
It reveals to us all his awful displeasure,
When sin’s reached its fullest measure.

Cumberland’s fells with it’s lakes and lands,
Worst of sinners throughout our land?
Nay, but continue in sin and evil to relish,
You too like them will most certainly perish.

(James R Hamilton, Thursday, 3rd, June, 2010)

Footnote: I wrote this at the time when Cumbria was being battered by the elements, following which an evangelist Dale McAlpine was arrested for telling a policeman that homosexuality was a sin. Shortly after this a man by the name of Bird went on a shotgun rampage killing a number of people.


Lord willing, Dale and I intend to spend a day preaching in Blackpool, a holiday resort on the west coast of England later in the year. Please remember us in your prayers please!

     The religion of nature is the religion of Satan; for it affects a spirit of pride and independence of God, and rebellion against his will. Why does a natural man reject the way of salvation by Jesus? Truly, because it is contrary to his natural notions: he cannot reconcile it to the attributes and perfections of God. Upon the very same footing many professing Christians abhor, with the utmost indignation, the Scriptural doctrines of God's everlasting love, unconditional election of sinners, and the final perseverance of his saints to eternal life by Jesus. Now both atheists and religious pharisees proceed upon the same principles; carnal reason, pride, and self-righteousness reign in their hearts, and blind their eyes.

     But it is the believer's mercy to see the truth, his humility to submit to it, and his duty to contend for it in love. In this way our elder brother Jesus acted, and in this way he prays in submission to his Father's and our Father's will. Though he had power over all flesh, yet only to those whom the Father had given him, was he to give eternal life. They were given to him as his charge, to redeem, to sanctify, and save. They were given to him as his reward for his toils and sufferings, they are the precious jewels which compose his mediatorial crown, not one of them can be lost, it is impossible. They are distinguished by special grace; they profess the gift of precious faith, called 'the faith of God's elect' it being peculiar to them alone (Titus 1:1). By this they enjoy a sense of the Father's electing love, and knowledge of the Son's redemption, the comforting witness of the Holy Spirit.